Behind The Scenes: what is not commonly known about zoos

keegan tenney, staff writer

Instead of letting animals live in their natural habitat, humans pave over over their territory to build harmful, tight enclosures that commoditize them for entertainment. Animals are forced into these harsh habitats that are too small for life. They die much more frequently in zoos than they do in the wild, not being used to the environment that they are being forced into.  While zoos provide a unique opportunity to see exotic animals up close, the reality behind zoo realities doesn’t make the cost add up to the benefit.

Zoos neither educate people nor help the planet. The selfishness of the human race is the only thing keeping zoos around. People are torturing these animals for the entertainment of others and are accepting of it because they make money for it. Zoos do not provide sufficient space, leaving animals to suffer and potentially die. There have also been animals that die prematurely from not being in proper conditions. “Many organisms cannot live in the confined spaces that most zoos provide,” said Colin Bieszard, a science intern at Portage Northern. Not only is death a problem from the treatment of zoos, but animals develop mental disorders such as depression, anxiety, or schizophrenia. Don’t confuse what humans may think is a friendly hello with what is more likely a cry for help.

Although many people claim that we don’t know how animals feel, or what they feel, they don’t see why zoos are a problem. Scientific studies can prove those people otherwise, “What we definitely know is that many animals suffer in zoos. There are high mortality rates, there are injuries and there’s depression. The science and research also shows that wide-ranging animals – the animals that are most popular for people to see, like tigers and bears – are the animals that do worst in the zoos,” said Outside Magazine contributor Tim Zimmerman. Animals deserve to be free, in the environment that they belong, “People that own zoos don’t care about the animals, they only care about the money, so they mistreat the animals and cut corners when it comes to their care,” said Alexis Middling (10). There are many other, better, and safer ways to educate students about the wilderness. That doesn’t mean take students/kids on an African Safari or anything of that sort, but even watching some (of Disney’s) nature documentaries can teach children more about wildlife than the zoo will ever be able to.

The wildlife and the animals would be safer and happier if the torture of captivity didn’t exist. Zoos are harmful to societies all across the globe, hurting the environment and the animals. They are polluting the minds of innocent animals who deserve a better life. How could you be happy knowing they aren’t?


Cited Sources:

Should zoos be banned? (n.d.). Retrieved March 14, 2017, from

10 facts about zoos. (n.d.). Retrieved March 14, 2017, from